Medical research

Comfort food leads to more weight gain during stress

It's no secret that overindulging on high-calorie foods can be detrimental to health, but it turns out that under stress, watching what you eat may be even more important.A team led by Professor Herbert Herzog, Head of the ...

Diabetes

How the body protects itself from type 2 diabetes

A specific group of white blood cells, termed "regulatory T cells," keeps the immune system in balance and suppresses its activity to protect the body against autoimmune diseases. Scientists at the German Center for Neurodegenerative ...

Diabetes

Researchers identify trigger and mechanism in type 1 diabetes

Researchers at National Jewish Health have identified an elusive trigger of type 1 diabetes. A protein fragment formed in the pancreas activates the immune system's T cells, leading them to attack and destroy beta cells, ...

Genetics

Poverty leaves a mark on our genes

A new Northwestern University study challenges prevailing understandings of genes as immutable features of biology that are fixed at conception.

Diabetes

High insulin costs come under fire on Capitol Hill

(HealthDay)—For many Americans, the cost of lifesaving insulin is simply too high, leading as many as one in four to ration the drug, experts testifying before the House Committee on Energy and Commerce said this week.

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Insulin

More reference expression data

Insulin is a hormone that has extensive effects on metabolism and other body functions, such as vascular compliance. Insulin causes cells in the liver, muscle, and fat tissue to take up glucose from the blood, storing it as glycogen in the liver and muscle, and stopping use of fat as an energy source. When insulin is absent (or low), glucose is not taken up by body cells, and the body begins to use fat as an energy source, for example, by transfer of lipids from adipose tissue to the liver for mobilization as an energy source. As its level is a central metabolic control mechanism, its status is also used as a control signal to other body systems (such as amino acid uptake by body cells). It has several other anabolic effects throughout the body. When control of insulin levels fails, diabetes mellitus results.

Insulin is used medically to treat some forms of diabetes mellitus. Patients with Type 1 diabetes mellitus depend on external insulin (most commonly injected subcutaneously) for their survival because the hormone is no longer produced internally. Patients with Type 2 diabetes mellitus are insulin resistant, and because of such resistance, may suffer from a relative insulin deficiency. Some patients with Type 2 diabetes may eventually require insulin when other medications fail to control blood glucose levels adequately.

Insulin is a peptide hormone composed of 51 amino acids and has a molecular weight of 5808 Da. It is produced in the islets of Langerhans in the pancreas. The name comes from the Latin insula for "island".

Insulin's structure varies slightly between species of animal. Insulin from animal sources differs somewhat in 'strength' (in carbohydrate metabolism control effects) in humans because of those variations. Porcine (pig) insulin is especially close to the human version.

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA